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How to answer "Tell me about yourself"? & What are some good interview questions to ask the hiring manager? I seem to be getting multiple interviews but no job.

I have a fashion interview coming up for a temp role that will get my foot in the door. I have a hard time asking questions or talking about myself pertaining fully to job description. I really want this job and just seem to keep having trouble.

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Brandie’s Answer

When answering the question "Tell me about yourself" in an interview, it's important to keep your response professional and relevant to the job for which you're applying. Here's a structured approach to crafting your answer:

1. **Start with your education**: Briefly mention your current educational status or most recent educational achievement, especially if it's relevant to the job or showcases important skills.

2. **Highlight relevant experience**: Discuss any work experience, internships, volunteer work, or projects that are pertinent to the position. Focus on what you've learned and how it's prepared you for this role.

3. **Mention your skills**: Talk about the skills you've developed that make you a good fit for the job. These could be technical skills, soft skills, or a combination of both.

4. **Connect to the job**: Explain why you're interested in this particular position and how your background makes you a strong candidate.

5. **Conclude with your current situation**: Briefly mention what you're looking for now in your career and why you're excited about the opportunity.

Here's an example of how to put it all together:
"I'm currently a senior at [University Name] studying [Major], where I've honed my skills in [Relevant Skills] through coursework and participation in [Relevant Projects or Clubs]. I've completed an internship with [Company Name] where I gained experience in [Relevant Experience], and I've volunteered as [Role] where I developed my [Relevant Skills]. I'm particularly drawn to this position at [Company Name] because of its commitment to [Something You Admire About the Company], and I'm excited about the opportunity to contribute my skills in [Job-Specific Skill] and grow in a [Type of Work Environment] environment. I'm now looking to leverage my background in [Field or Skill] to further my career, ideally in a role like this one where I can [Specific Contribution You Hope to Make]."

As for good interview questions to ask the hiring manager, consider the following:
1. **Role-Specific Questions**:
- Can you describe a typical day in this role?
- What are the immediate challenges you'd like the new hire to focus on?

2. **Team and Company Culture**:
- Can you tell me more about the team I'll be working with?
- How would you describe the company culture here?

3. **Development and Growth**:
- What opportunities for professional development does the company offer?
- How does the company support career growth and advancement?

4. **Performance and Success**:
- How is success measured for this position?
- Can you provide examples of projects I'd be working on?

5. **Future Prospects**:
- What are the company's goals for the next year, and how does this department contribute to achieving them?
- Are there any upcoming changes or expansions planned for the team or department?

6. **Feedback and Evaluation**:
- What is the performance review process like here?
- How often can I expect to receive formal feedback?

7. **Next Steps**:
- What are the next steps in the interview process?
- Is there anything else I can provide to help you make your decision?

Asking questions not only shows your interest in the role and the company but also helps you determine if the job and the workplace are a good fit for you.
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much! I really appreciate all of that! stephanie
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Martha’s Answer

First, congratulations for getting interviews, Stephanie. This shows that you are doing something right. But I commend you for wondering if you could do even better to actually land the job.

Your answer to "tell me about yourself" should always be truthful, but vary based on the job description and what they already know about you. Your answer should be more than a summary of your resume; it should highlight two or three skills or interests relevant to the job. I don't know what role are applying for so I will use myself for an example. I usually applied to training or communications jobs. So I highlighted a consistent commitment to teaching and/or educating myself, excellence in written communication, success in team building or some variation. This created opportunities to link back to the specific job and further demonstrate my fit. You want to make it easy for them to imagine you in the role so don't hesitate to "connect the dots" for them. See below for two links with further tips.

As for questions for managers, focus first on understanding expectations for the role, how you could help the team, and how you could help the manager. That's what the hiring manager cares about and you want to show that you are aligned with them. Shift questions about company policies - such as time off, tuition reimbursement, etc -- to HR. Always be careful about your tone because HR and the hiring manager (frankly, anyone you talk with) may compare notes. In subsequent interviews, you could delve more into how they like to work and supervise. I liked to ask about current team and company initiatives also both to determine my fit and point out how I could help. See below for a link with further tips.

Good luck!

Martha recommends the following next steps:

Tips from The Muse - https://www.themuse.com/advice/tell-me-about-yourself-interview-question-answer-examples
Tips from Indeed - https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/interviewing/interview-question-tell-me-about-yourself
Questions for Manager - Indeed - https://www.indeed.com/career-advice/interviewing/questions-to-ask-hiring-manager
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much, Martha! stephanie
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James Constantine’s Answer

Hello Stephanie,

How to Answer “Tell Me About Yourself” in an Interview:

When asked to “tell me about yourself” in an interview, it’s essential to craft a concise and compelling response that highlights your relevant experiences, skills, and achievements. Here is a structured approach you can follow:

Introduction: Start with a brief introduction of who you are professionally. Mention your current role or most recent position.

Professional Background: Provide a summary of your professional background, focusing on experiences that are relevant to the job you are interviewing for. Highlight key accomplishments and skills that demonstrate your qualifications.

Skills and Strengths: Discuss specific skills and strengths that make you a strong candidate for the position. Tailor these to align with the job requirements.

Career Goals: Briefly mention your career goals and how this opportunity fits into your long-term aspirations.

Closing Statement: Conclude by expressing your enthusiasm for the role and how you believe your background makes you a great fit for the position.

Remember to practice your response beforehand to ensure it flows smoothly and effectively communicates your value as a candidate.

Good Interview Questions to Ask the Hiring Manager:

Asking thoughtful questions during an interview not only demonstrates your interest in the role but also helps you gather valuable information about the company and position. Here are some good questions to ask the hiring manager:

Can you tell me more about the day-to-day responsibilities of this role?
What are the key priorities for someone stepping into this position in the first 30, 60, or 90 days?
How would you describe the company culture and what type of employee tends to thrive here?
What opportunities are there for professional development and growth within the company?
Can you provide more insight into the team I’ll be working with and how collaboration is encouraged?
What are the biggest challenges facing the team/department/company right now, and how does this role contribute to addressing them?
How does performance feedback typically work within the organization?

By asking insightful questions, you not only gain a better understanding of whether the role is a good fit for you but also leave a positive impression on the hiring manager.

Top 3 Authoritative Sources Used in Answering this Question:

Harvard Business Review: The Harvard Business Review provides valuable insights on effective interviewing techniques, including tips on answering common interview questions and strategies for asking engaging questions as a candidate.

The Muse: The Muse offers practical advice on navigating interviews, crafting compelling responses, and standing out as a candidate during the hiring process.

Glassdoor: Glassdoor provides insights into common interview questions asked by hiring managers in various industries, helping candidates prepare effectively for their interviews by understanding what employers may be looking for in responses.

GOD BLESS!
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much for all of this really appreciate it! stephanie
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Patrick’s Answer

Stephanie, it's crucial to remember that when you're asked "Tell me about yourself" in an interview, the key is to maintain a balance between being professional and being genuine. It's important to highlight your relevant experiences and skills. Begin with a quick summary of your background, touching on your education, professional journey, and any significant achievements. Make sure to focus on aspects that showcase your suitability for the role you're applying for, emphasizing skills and experiences that match the job description.

Also, don't forget to express your passion for the fashion industry and your excitement for the chance to work in the role you're interviewing for. Draw attention to any specific experiences or projects that reflect your interest in fashion. This could be anything from previous work in the field, related coursework or certifications, or personal projects involving fashion design, merchandising, or styling.

When crafting your answer, Stephanie, ensure it follows a chronological or thematic structure that's easy to follow and engaging for the interviewer. Try to avoid sharing overly personal or irrelevant details that might detract from your professional persona. Practicing your response beforehand can help you deliver your message clearly, concisely, and confidently.

Regarding questions you should ask the hiring manager, it's important to prepare insightful queries that show your genuine interest in the role and the company. Think about asking questions that explore the company culture, team dynamics, role expectations, and growth and development opportunities within the company.

Here are some good interview questions you could ask the hiring manager, Stephanie:

1. Could you elaborate on the daily responsibilities of this role?
2. What are the main qualities or skills you're seeking in the perfect candidate for this position?
3. How would you characterize the company culture and the dynamics of the team I would be joining?
4. Could you share some details about the company's long-term goals and how this role contributes to those?
5. Are there opportunities for professional growth or advancement within the company?
6. How does the company promote work-life balance and employee well-being?
7. What are the next steps in the hiring process, and when can I expect a decision?
8. Is there anything else you need from me or any areas you'd like me to clarify to help you evaluate my suitability for this role?

By asking insightful questions that show your interest in the role and your eagerness to contribute to the company's success, you can make a lasting positive impression on the hiring manager and stand out from other candidates. Make sure to listen actively to their answers and engage in a meaningful conversation during the interview.

Finally, Stephanie, if you're struggling to land a job despite numerous interviews, it might be beneficial to seek feedback from interviewers or career advisors to pinpoint areas for improvement. Reflect on your previous interviews, identify any recurring issues, and consider seeking extra support or resources, such as mock interviews or professional development workshops. These can help improve your interview skills and boost your chances of success. Remember, with determination, preparation, and a positive mindset, you can overcome any hurdles and achieve your goals in the fashion industry.
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Julius’s Answer

The best way to answer " Tell me about yourself?" Is with a brief height light, summary of your experience, your education, the value you bring to an employer and the reason you're looking forward to learning more about this next job and opportunity to work with them.

There a couple/many questions you can ask a hiring manager. Asking thoughtful questions In your interview reaffirms your interest in the job. It also shows the hiring manager that you've thought seriously about it would mean to be employed in this role at this company/organization. Some of the questions to ask are,
- what do you like most about working here.
- How do you measure success in this role.
- what qualities do outstanding employees at this company/organization embody.
- is there anything I can provide to support my application.
Thank you comment icon Thank you so much, Julius! stephanie
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Karin’s Answer

Hi stephanie,

Congratulations on getting interviews! It means you are competitive! A job will come. And once you have ONE job offer, more will come!

So, you need to analyse where you can improve after the invitation. When you don't get the job after the interview, is there any point in the interview where you feel they just went cold?

If it is e.g. not a real interview, i.e. the position is already earmarked for someone but they need a minimum number of candidates, the interviewer might seem bored, unengaged, just going through the motions.

If there is something about your appearance they find unprofessional (e.g. you have a full-face tattoo and 20 face piercings while applying to a conservative bank) the tone would probably also be frosty from the start.

I don't think that a single answer that was not perfect would sink your candidacy, But if at any point during the interview the temperature fell significantly, facial expressions changed, they went from cordial to clearly just wanting this over with and only went through the motions, it's worth investigating why that might be. What did you talk about just before? What did you answer? It won't be that dramatic but you get what I am saying.

Even if it is a phone interview, dress up like you normally would for an interview, make-up if you usually wear make-up. I find it gives me more confidence and better concentration. I also prefer to stand and pretend I am looking at the interviewer.

Remember, they are interested what you can do for them. So present a clear value proposition and explain how your education and experience will make the business better ($$$).

Just some thoughts. I hope it helps! Good luck!

KP
Thank you comment icon Thank you, Karin for the advice. stephanie
Thank you comment icon You are very welcome! Karin P.
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